Conference for criminal justice workers dealing with mentally ill - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Conference for criminal justice workers dealing with mentally ill

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May 6, 2004

Albany -- Dealing with the mentally ill and substance abusers has become a costly challenge for Georgia's courts and law enforcement.

Superior Court Judge Stephen Goss says 15 percent of the people who come into courts in Dougherty County are mentally ill or using drugs or alcohol. That is why he set up a conference to teach criminal justice professionals how to deal with people with those problems.

 Goss said "They are ill. They are coming in and out of the jail, costing a lot of money. So we are trying to work it from both sides, and keep as many people out of jail as we can, because of the huge cost to the taxpayer. "

More than 400 law enforcement, court, and criminal justice employees from 60 counties across Georgia attended Thursday's conference.

posted at 4:42 PM by jimw@walb.com